School officials in Comsewogue have swapped traditional textbooks for new netbooks loaded with reading material for their eighth, ninth and tenth grade students, according to a report published Monday in The Port Times Record.
The new technology – 900 netbooks loaded with Google's Chrome browser and other internet-based apps – cost the district $250,000, which was the same amount of money it would have spent on new textbooks for those grade levels this year. The netbooks are in line with the district's transition away from paper resources and increase in use of online materials.
"It fit our need and the price was certainly attractive," superintendent Dr. Joseph Rella told The Port Times Record.
According to the report, students will not be able to access material the district has deemed inappropriate while they are using the school district's network. The network is being upgraded this summer to accommodate the new devices. Students who prefer to use their own laptops will have to register them with the school; parents of students can insure the school-issued laptops by purchasing a $28 insurance policy.
Rella told The Port Times Record that he hopes to expand the netbook initiative to all grade levels over the next few years.
Click here to read the full report from The Port Times Record.